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an enemy that is using new places, new tactics to come at us and we're going to be ready for that. >> dennis, i can hear the questions and comments on the other side when you say we knew a lot about al qaeda. you knew a lot about al qaeda in yemen and yet it's just today when the obama white house is saying, no, we're not going to take the prisoners from guantanamo and take them back to yemen. you knew this before this christmas day bombing attempt, right? >> we did know the situation in yemen from day one, which is why we've dramatically increased our efforts there, working closely with our yemeni partners, taking the fight to al qaeda, which is a threat to them and us. we're increasing our intelligence focus there. we're increasing our assets there in support of the yemenis and increasing our training of them. but as the president indicated, when al qaeda on the arabian peninsula formed, one of the things they drew attention to, to increase their recruitment, and motivation for their followers was guantanamo bay detention facility.
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so we continue to believe it's in our interest to close it. and as the president indicated, we will close it. >> dennis mcdonough at the white house, part of the counterterrorism team there. dennis, thank you very much. in the last minute we have left, your reaction from dennis mcdonough? >> i think one of theisting things, there's been a lot of talk today about failure to communicate and connect the dots. i think what we're also seeing is that al qaeda's getting very smart about who they recruit, to carry out these attacks. a rich nigerian in the case of the christmas attempted bombing, a double agent recruited by jordan in the case of the attack in afghanistan recently. perhaps some americans who went over to pakistan to be trained as jihadists. so it's not just something we can solve with more information gathering. we also have to be smarter about the kind of recruiting that al qaeda's doing around the world. >> mark whitaker, thank you very much. also thanks to jim miklaszewski.
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and michael sheehan. i'm david shuster in washington. tamron, that does it for "the big picture." >> up next, "hardball" with chris matthews talking more about what we heard from the president after the big summit. obama cracks the whip. let's play "hardball." good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. leading off tonight, too slow? president obama just cracked the whip on the christmas bombing intelligence failures. but is he going too slow? president obama's big problem. that's when something happens, or should happen, it takes him a long time to get on it. health care waddles through congress and he watches. he's only late today, calling a
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meeting of his security people to find out why a guy nearly blew up an airplane over detroit on christmas day. is this slowness to act? this tendency to narrate events rather than control them? the reason president obama is being hit so hard these days from right as well as left, republicans are out to destroy him obviously. but where are his supporters on the democratic side? are they slow to defend him because he, the president, has been slow to lead? the head of the republican national committee, michael steele, is coming here, has made his plans clear. his new book is called "right now." the 12-step program for defeating the obama agenda. could it be that the republicans poll lower than any point in history because all they do is say no. michael steele joins us later. plus, the increased check on airline passengers from 14 countries. is this a reasonable thing for us to do, given that the 9/11 killers came from saudi arabia, egypt, lebanon and the emirates? what are we supposed to do?
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how is it possible the underwear bomber makes it onto the plane but joan rivers can't? that's in the "sideshow" where it belongs. is the tea party movement a comeback or a sign of its demise? did the president deliver a tough enough call to action? pat buchanan and drew weston is a professor of psychology at emory university. and author of i'm the political brain." you're a smart guy, drew, what's the president's problem? why does he seem to be taking a lot of heat from all directions, especially right now? >> i think in general, what we've seen from the president is just what you described. coming on too -- whatever that phrase is. he's a little too slow to react and typically waits until the damage has been done. in this case, i'm not sure that
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was the case. i thought he delivered a pretty strong speech today. but the problem was, the conflicting message between him today and his homeland security chief, janet napolitano, when this first struck, where her tone was very reassuring fl. don't worry, the system worked. but i thought he took a much better tone today. >> they're still paying for her comment, that the system works, like there's a chicken in every basket. sounds like something from the hoover administration. here's president obama after the meeting today. >> the bottom line is this. the u.s. government had sufficient information to have uncovered this plot and potentially disrupt the christmas day attack. but our intelligence community failed to connect those dots. which would have placed the suspect on the no-fly list. in other words, this was not a failure to collect intelligence, it was a failure to integrate and understand the intelligence that we already had. the information was there.
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agencies and analysts who needed it had access to it. and our professionals were trained to look for it. and to bring it all together. now, i will accept that intelligence by its nature is imperfect. but it is increasingly clear that intelligence was not fully analyzed or fully leveraged. that's not acceptable. and i will not tolerate it. >> would that have been a better statement on the day after christmas, ten days ago? >> it sure is. that is tough. there is anger in that, chris. there's a sense of, look, let's get to the bottom of this. somebody dropped the ball here. this is a grave situation. 300 people could have been scattered across detroit area. and i'm going to find some answers. somebody didn't connect the dots. and i'm going to find out whether the information didn't get to dni, the director of national intelligence, or whether the dots were not connected there. i think out of this, you're going to see possibly -- >> didn't you know, pat, as an observer and reporter, didn't you know that everything that he just said a couple days after
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christmas, you didn't have to wait until the 5th of january? >> as soon as you heard this guy had a manufactured bomb sewn into his underwear, 23-year-old from nigeria -- >> you know all these facts. you knew we had picked up information in yemen. >> sure. >> just a few days after. you knew the kid's father had washed us. >> exactly. >> more than a week ago. why did he give the speech today? >> that's the problem. as drew was saying, he is late. he is too little, too late. i think this is a good move. i think he's on top of it now. but he's been damaged by these ten days. but i'll tell you, cheney has stung him and if he stung him to this action, that's fa good thing. >> a broken clock is right twice a day, that would include dick cheney. drew, your thoughts about this timing issue. is this to use the term all over the place right now, systemic? this slowness and rather coolness with regard to ft. hood? the president arrived several days later and part of that service down there, appropriately so. some felt he was detached,
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didn't feel emotionally connected to the event. it was about our service people getting killed in the line of duty. he didn't seem to act emotional, as most presidents would in those circumstances. is it timing? is it emotion? detachment? size it up. >> i think you're right on the money on-e. >> no, i'm asking you. i know what you think. i'm asking you to define it. >> well, i think it's both timing and emotion. and i'm really with pat on this. i think this is -- that this is a -- i think this is, as the president would use the word, a systemic problem. we saw this on health care, where there was no passion in anything that he did, until it got to be october and the plan was almost run into the ground. there wasn't a coherent story he told on health care. really until october when he decided to say, okay, i guess there's a problem here, let me tell you about what they are. it took him a long time to get there. i think he's a guy who comes
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across as he can be phenomenally passionate. that's what won him the election. but he's -- >> let me tell you a problem -- >> the problem is, he is not a natural executive at all. he is not engaged. he is, quite frankly, academic. he is prophecyorrial. the tea party people almost dynamited that thing during the summer. then he came back and said, harry reed's got it. >> let's talk about the executive role. i think we're on to something very narrow and particular and pointed here. something like the white house security. and those grifters broke in. nothing really went wrong. but they did break in. they had no right to be there. it took him the longest time. sally quinn who writes about things in washington said today in the "washington post" on the op-ed page, he should have fired somebody. it should have been mark sullivan in the secret service, that was a case. then the other thing with this
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thing with the airplane almost being blown up. nobody seems to be -- you kont get a sense, he's the boss. he's got people like rahm emanuel enforcing them. and nobody gets sledgehammered. >> i know -- >> the president explained. >> nixon would have called in haldeman, if those two people had walked in there. what went on, bob, what happened. get to the bottom of this. heads roll. i know they ran into a lot of trouble, but i tell you, that was the best-run white house i have ever been in, first term of nixon. when nixon demanded this kind of action, and he would not -- >> watergate, though. >> watergate was first term. you can laugh about it. >> i'm not laughing. >> bob halderman was the executive. rahm emanuel is a congressman and runs around -- >> let me get a little dispassionate from you, drew. that is this question. executive ability, this president was not a governor, not ha mayor, not used to
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cashing the checks or signing them. he's not used to being there with the four-alarm fire. my idea of a president, my idea of a mayor, police chief is exactly the same. the job i always wanted was police commissioner in phillie. i want to be standing on the curb when there's a big fire, and reporters come by and ask are you going to put it out in an hour or what? i want to see a president on the job. i love that stuff. i thought bush was out to lunch during katrina. i think that really killed his presidency and his role in history. because he wasn't there. he was somewhere in crawford drinking near beers. i don't know what he was doing, but he wasn't on the job. this president was in hawaii getting some sun. fair enough. but it looked terrible. it looked terrible. when there's a big fire, the mayor ought to be there. you're the brain here, you wrote about the political brain. give me some brain. >> i just write about brains. >> tell me what his brain should
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have been doing. >> what his brain should have been thinking back to is the other bush who came out on september 12th with the foghorn. >> i like that guy. >> he showed the passion. he was right there. and every american stood by him. and -- >> then he let cheney eat him up like a pacman. grab that little hero that we loved with the firefighter, and turned him into a little agent of the causes. >> let me give you another example. robert kennedy. if something had gone wrong and jack kennedy called up and said find out, he would have be bebeen -- he would have been all over it. lyndon johnson, what happened here. but to be out there snorkeling -- >> can a president, i've been accused of being yesterday saying he's ray milan because he's so calm, he never gets ruffled, never sweats like pat and i do, never shows the passion of leadership. can he lead without passion?
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>> no, you can't lead without passion. the reality is you can't be motivated without passion. passion is what gets us to move. and if he can't get that passion, if he can't get worked up, he won't be able to lead and motivate. >> all my life i keep asking people, women who want their husbands to change, husbands who want their wives -- i always say, have you ever met anybody who's changed? that's my question. >> passion is a reflection of conviction and belief. >> right. >> you get passionate because you really care about it. you can't keep faking it if you don't -- >> ronald reagan did not lose his temper often, but people knew where he stood. what's the difference? >> this is where -- >> with ronald reagan, he would start -- go ahead. >> drew? >> i was going to say, pat, i fully agree with you. this is where i think the real crux of the issue is. which is that, no one really knows where obama stands on virtually anything. because he doesn't express his passion on anything. >> let me stop you there. i know where he stands.
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he wants national health insurance. i know where he stands, he's trying to put out a real fiscal economic policy. i know those things. i know -- i disagree with him about -- understand he's somewhere in the middle about afghanistan. he's with me on iraq. it was a mistake. i do know where he stands. >> i agree. i know where he stands. again, about his belief. do you think this is really a war president? we're going to -- >> the trouble is finding them at large. >> i'm not sure he believes in the war. >> the war against al qaeda. he's been clear. >> we know his position on health care. does he care deeply enough -- >> let me tell you a problem. we had mr. magoo running us for eight years, by the way. they went over to get al qaeda. they ended up fighting with iraq. they were so off-base. so passion ain't enough. vision, smarts, brains. we should have gone after the guy, i'm with michael smerconish in phillie, we still haven't
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gotten al qaeda. we went to get bin laden and to get mullah and the rest of them. we still haven't gotten them. we say we can't get them, so let's go to war with saddam hussein. that's what you should do. that was passion. >> but george w. bush had passion. that's why he rolled the democratic senate with daschle and hillary and biden and all of them voting for war. >> a pollster once said to me, great leaders need motive. you know where he's going. he needs passion and he needs, or she needs spontaneity. to react quickly to events. the lights are on and somebody's home. i think the obama problem is not passion, it's not motive. i know both are there. it's spontaneity, the ability to move quick and say, you're right, i like it, let's go. >> every journalist needs three things, drive, drive, drive. and that's what's missing. >> we all have our list. the political brain, drew
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westen. michael steele takes aim at, well, his own party, saying they screwed up after ronald reagan. we'll get to that. he's much defer on the dems. but can republicans right their ship by standing against everything? can the no party get a yes? (announcer) we understand. you want to grow internationally.
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do you think you can take over -- >> not this year. >> you don't think so. >> i don't know yet. we still have vacancies that need to get filled. >> wow. welcome back to "hardball." that was michael steele with hanity last night.
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independent political analysts and liberal columnists stated republicans have a very real shot at taking back the majority in 2010. make no mistake about it, we're playing to win. michael steele has a new book for defeating the obama agenda. do you stick with what you said the other night that you don't think your party can win back the house this time? >> let me just start by saying, i think i gave an honest analysis of the situation. i'm not a pundit there. i want to play to win. the point i was making, if you go through the rest of that interview was, we're in the process of now putting our players on the table. we're still beating that team. we've got primaries that are going to be competitive. so there are a lot of things to take into consideration. i agree with the nrcc and nrsc, and others around in the party who believe that we have real shots this november, and i'm playing to win as well. but i'm not going to sit here in january, not knowing where all of my pieces are on this
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playground, or this chess board and tell you, oh, we're going to do it absolutely this way or that way. what i was trying to say is, we're now beginning to put a good team in place. coming off the wins in new jersey and virginia. i feel very good about next fall. and i'm excited and ready to rock and roll. >> let me restraight the question that sean put to you. can you, it isn't will you, he said can you win the house this year? >> yes, we can. >> can you, mr. chairman, win the house? >> yes. yes, we can. >> the question is, i get the feeling reading your book, not having read it, but looking at the cover and checking my name in it like everybody else, and thank you for the mention. >> can i just say real quick? you know what i appreciate and why i put that in there? the one thing i've always appreciated about you is that you don't try to hide or color what your perspective of the views are. >> no, no. i'll accept all of that. but liberal on a lot of things. but i'm also a critic every day
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of when things go wrong. i made that comment, i'll say it again, i wished bush well in the beginning, and i've been rooting for them and will continue to root for his success because i want him to succeed. that's clear. but i'm a critic every day. here's a question for your book. which i found fascinating. i'm looking like all washingtonians, and look under ps, and i look at these names. pacino, al. >> we know who he is. >> party of lincoln, great for republican like yourself. patterson, david, of new york. pawlenty. pbs. daniel pearl, the great heroic journalist killed over there. pelosi, nancy. prejean, miss california. and public option. but there's a big p missing here. where is the big p from alaska? no mention of her? she's the most admired woman in
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the country alongside hillary clinton. and you don't even give her the respect of a mention in your book as chairman of the republican party? sarah, you're not even in here. >> she just wrote a book. there's nothing to make of that. >> nothing to make of it? she notices it, i'm sure. >> no. look, first off, the governor and i are good buddies. and i have an enormous amount of respect and gratitude for her run last year, and what she's done as governor of the state. >> why don't you mention her name? >> i'm not afraid to speak palin. i'm not afraid to speak her name. the emphasis of the book, and i invite everyone, starting with you, to actually read it cover to cover. and you'll understand that this is not about singling out one individual. and focusing on one personality. this is about a party that's in recovery. a party that's about to enter into a renaissance in which we can begin connecting the american people i think on some foundational principles, whether
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you're talking health care, the war in iraq or whatever it happens to be. that's the focus here. >> can i use some common language? i want to use street language with you if you don't mind. >> absolutely. i'm street. >> it seems to me that the democrats have a problem, the economy is terrible, 10% unemployment, the president came in like hell on wheels and i think done a good job. but clinton, no roses to hand out yet, to rewards yet politically. but the republican party keeps coming up as a bad brand. about one in five americans call themselves republicans. even if you're a conservative, people aren't willing to say i'm a republican. if your brand sucks, how can you rebuild the product? >> that's exactly what this blueprint is about. that's what this book really focuses on, starting with the mea culpa, which you and i are familiar with, as good little catholic boys. the reality is, you can't begin to make a step forward until you understand what you're stepping away from. or more importantly, what you've
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stepped into. >> was iraq a big mistake? katrina? i know you're going to pull back -- >> no, i'm not going to pull back. >> not paying attention to katrina. was that a mistake -- >> it was katrina. >> going into iraq when we should have been fighting al qaeda, was that a mistake? >> no, i don't think that was a mistake. >> going into iraq wasn't a mistake? the american people think so. >> look, you have to look at the totality of what the president saw and what the president knew the information, along with the democrats, as you noted in the last segment, who stood with the president on the war in iraq. and when had became politically expedient for them, they flipped like a jail bird on the issue. but having said that, the broader point here, more importantly, is that as a party, we stepped away from principle. and this, i think, is a pathway back to regaining that ground. >> you know when you stepped away from principle, is when president bush wouldn't veto a
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single overspending bill. >> dully noted in the book. >> let me ask you a tricky question. i may take the republican side on this fight. whether we should be taking these people like khalid shaikh muhammad up in new york, and crazy jurors who have different kinds of theories. let me ask you this. is it a reasonable debate or right side or wrong side to this? the right side, we have to have military tribunals for these people, and the wrong side we have criminal cases? is it as simple as that? >> i think to a large extent it is, chris. at the end of the day you've got to call it what it is. who are you dealing with here? who are the jury of khalid shaikh mohammed's peers? who are his peers? what american, or what new york citizen is his pier that can sit in judgment of him? >> that's the wrong side of this issue. >> it's the wrong side. >> why did your president, our president at the time, george w.
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bush, try the shoe bomber under criminal court in the united states? you said it was the wrong way to go. then why did your president and our president at the time do that? >> again, i wasn't in that meeting. >> have i tricked you? i have tricked you. i've let you give a policy position here which i've now explained to you, ran contrary to what the republican president did. you're laughing. but you just took a position and said it's wrong to have a criminal trial. >> no, i didn't -- chris -- >> you've got a criminal trial -- >> let me tell you -- >> you did answer it. i caught you. >> you didn't catch me. i started to tell you -- >> the tape will show it. >> let's go to the videotape. >> the tape will show, sir, that you said the right position was military tribunals -- >> and i said -- >> that george w. bush went the criminal route with the shoe bomber. >> okay. you clearly have answered my question for me. so i guess i'll just -- >> no, i've judged it.
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i've judged it. >> my start was, i wasn't in the room on that. but if you let me finish it, i would have gone on to say, that i do not think that we should subject our courts, whether it's under a republican administration or a democratic administration, to terrorists who are not about our constitution, to wrap our constitution around these imbeciles is not smart. it's not smart politics. and it's not smart national security policy. and the reality of it is, again, whether you're talking then or now, to be considered that this is -- our criminal justice system tries crooks, common criminals. it doesn't try terrorists. >> by the way, we could disagree, because i could argue terrorist behavior is criminal. let me ask you this. can you still be a liberal republican, like the ones we grew up with rockefeller and henry cabot lodge and bill scranton, is it still okay to be a liberal republican? a liberal republican, not a
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moderate -- >> i don't know what a liberal republican is. what i do know, i know republicans who adhere to certain core principles like, you know, taxes and the amount that we pay, the role of government, free markets and free enterprise, looking at communities and appreciating the ability to create reinvestment and opportunities for people who are trying to move up the ladder of success. if you're standing with us on those core principles, if you value, you know, the lively hoods and lives of individuals to achieve the american dream, then i think this is a party you can stand with. >> okay. thank you very much. michael steele, the name of your book is "right now. " """. up next, how did the underwear bomber get onto an airplane, but comedienne joan rivers couldn't? that's coming up next in the
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back to "hardball." time for the "sideshow." comedians take vacations too, but they were back last night about the attempted christmas airline bombing. let's start with our pal, jay. >> you know it is good to be back. we were off for christmas. and apparently so was the department of homeland security. yeah. >> he wants to blow the plane up. he sets his underpants on fire. and thank god the passengers on the plane subdue the guy. they secure him. ove him to first class. wow. are we sending the right message there? >> he paid cash for his ticket.
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it was a one-way ticket. >> paid nearly $3,000 in cash for his plane ticket. and checked no bags. what the [ bleep ]! it's december! he's going from nigeria to amsterdam to detroit without a coat sm? with a one-way ticket? do you think he's going to detroit to start a better life? >> i didn't know he didn't have a coat. it was cold in detroit. meanwhile, another comic, joan rivers herself got into this thing firsthand. she was bumped from a u.s.-bound flight out of costa rica because of her passport, which according to the new york daily news reads joan rosenberg aka joan rivers. doesn't anybody in costa rica know who joan rivers is? apparently nobody at the security line. she was stranded overnight. finally on larry king last night, ron paul, the libertarian, a hero to many,
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including a lot of young people out there, took on dick cheney's constant criticism of president obama. >> what about dick cheney's complaints? >> well, i think he had his eight years and he's caused a lot of trouble for our country, and he perpetuated a war in iraq that was wrongheaded. i think it best he not be so critical right now. >> wow. well said. i would add, a vice president whose chief of staff got nailed with four felony convictions. shouldn't be advising us on how to run things properly. up next, the obama administration orders patdown searches of all u.s.-bound passengers coming from 14 countries, now some groums are crying foul. but when the people who try to attack us from these countries, isn't it better to be safe than worry about hurt feelings? that debate straight ahead. (announcer) we're in the energy business.
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happy new year! welcome to progressive.com! this place is hoppin'! ah, it's resolution season! well, my resolution -- save money. last year, millions of people visited progressive.com, and those who switched saved an average of over $350. no wonder it's like a party in here. [ blows horn ] [ blowing rhythm on horn ] [ rhythm continues ] i wrote that. starting the new year with savings -- now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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i'm matt nesto with your cnbc market wrap. stocks mixed. blockbuster sales report from ford helped lift the s&p. the dow industrials were down 12 points. the s&p up just about 3.5%. nasdaq with a tiny little gain of its own. ford shares up 6.5% after reporting a 23% jump in december sales. the other big u.s. automaker is not faring as well. gm sales down almost sp%. chrysler saw a 10.5% drop. the automaker's worst year since 1962. industrials up 5%, after top shareholder warren buffett opposed the company's plan to issue millions of new shares to buy british candy maker cadbury.
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and continental airlines, up 13% after the new ceo said he'll forgo his annual salary, and bonus, until his airline is back in the black. that's it from cnbc. we're first in business worldwide. now back to "hardball." back to "hardball." in an effort to increase security, obviously, the transportation security administration, the tsa, the people that check us at the airports, has increased screening measures for airline passengers coming from 14 countries. look at them around the world there, all highlighted there. andrew is with the muslim public affairs council. he says this is the wrong way to go about safety. david rif kin, been with us, disagrees. let me start with you, david. why is it smart to go to these 14 countries, afghanistan, algeria, and cuba, iran, all
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these countries, mostly islamic countries, except for cuba, i guess. why do we have to -- they have extra patdowns, basically extra check of your carry-on luggage. sort of what they do, i travel all the time, gentlemen, when you get on the sss list, when they pull you aside and say, we're going to check out everything, we're going to wand you, check your luggage by hand. they do that to you if you break one of the rules, the buzzer goes off too many times. is that right or wrong? >> it's a reasonable way to go. let's leave aside profiling and political correctness. the real question, is this the right way to profile. let's agree that these countries, coming from these countries is a reasonable proxy for the probability, enhanced probability that you might be a terrorist. i frankly think we need to look at other factors. we need to look at age, we need to look at gender -- >> what does that tell you? >> young males. again, we shouldn't be blinded by it. we have women terrorist bombers.
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>> let me ask you a question. the people that attacked us on 9/11, hard, horrific evidence, they were checked. they were called back out of line again because they set off the metal detectors. they're carrying box cutters. they were still allowed to get on the plane. they still killed 3,000 people. so what good does it do to pull a person out of line and do one of these patdowns, when all it's going to do is slow somebody down for ten minutes? >> nothing if it's ineffective by itself. but if you combine it by other measures, you have to work the process from beginning to end. selecting people, checking people and making sure they don't get through, if they are carrying something suspicious objects. it's not either/or. >> your thoughts? what do we do? these are countries, not ethnic groups. just to remind everybody, 9/11, 15 saudis, one egyptian, one lebanese and one from the union of the emirates countries. they could be coming from denmark tomorrow, we don't know.
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but their countries of origin correspond to the countries on this list. >> my colleague mentioned we need a layered effect, that's correct. but the sort of ethnic and religious profiling -- >> where is that taking place right now? >> right now with the tsa standards, by selecting these 14 countries, that's telegraphing our strategy. if we decide to profile from these countries, the terrorists will recruit elsewhere. it will not help against richard reid or jose a padilla or any of the uk bombers in the 2006 plot. because these are people who don't fit profiles. a 2005 study by the library of congress found there is a no reliable profile. but this has been -- >> country of origin. >> i understand that. even based on country of origin -- >> if you only check certain people, because you can't check everybody, who should you check? >> well, again -- >> if you have to -- have you ever been at the l.a. airport in
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the morning, 6:00, when there's 1 billion people out here, or reagan? you can't check everybody through exhaustive checks, or nobody would get on a plane. how do you single out the people you want checked? >> let's go back to what president obama was saying earlier in his statement about the review. what we need to do is make sure our intelligence actually connects the dots. >> no, in terms of checking people when they get on airplanes, which people should be checked most thoroughly? >> what you need to do is make sure in the layers themselves, you need to check people beforehand by having the proper intelligence. >> no, how do you check people when you get on an airplane? i'm asking a simple question. >> i'm getting to it. it's a nuanced issue. you have stage one beforehand. once you get to the airport itself, afterwards what you do is look at certain, perhaps behaviors that they're doing, behavioral profiling. if they're doing something strange, you're asking basic questions about, you know, where are you going to be going. >> who asks these questions?
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i go to the airport and they don't ask any questions. >> for instance, at logan airport in boston, they're doing something right now where they have a pilot program where as a part of airport security itself, as one of the last rings of defense, is that they do this thing where they look for things that are possible suspicious behaviors. it doesn't look at ethnicity or race or religion but the behaviors themselves, things that might be dead giveaways. >> like what? >> for instance, if someone's going to be doing something where they're going to be a little bit fidgety, or not answering questions straight. >> but there are no questions put to you. >> in some cases, though, there will be questions put to individuals. >> i'm all for that. how do you decide you ask the questions of? >> it's not just about questions either, though. it's also making sure to read the body language. >> give me a procedure to defend america. quickly. what would be your procedure? his procedure is to at least start with this country of ours and -- >> i'm not suggesting profiling. >> but it's a layered defense.
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starting with smart intelligence, making sure that we share the information. then from there, making sure that once we get closer to the airport, we have behavioral assessments that don't rely on certain profiles that are not going to be -- >> like country of origin. >> country of origin -- >> you said ask questions. they don't ask any questions right now. >> we don't have the resources for behavioral profiling. let me tell you, if we push al qaeda to stop recruiting the people they've been recruiting and start looking for scandinavians, they will. but they would trickle down. this is what you do in warfare. you push your enemy to operate in let than optimal ways. profiling is just a starting point. you're supposed to look at other things. it's not a panacea. to deny it's useful is a foundational stone is just silly. >> it only displaces the problem. it only takes one or two people to do these things. >> let's get away from race and ethnicity.
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let's get to nationality. if you look at the i.r.a. 20 years ago, wouldn't you start with the irish? >> of course. >> is that prejudicial? no. to look for the i.r.a. among the irish. is it prejudicial? >> no. >> because they recruit among the irish. >> the thing is it's very specific. there's a difference between the i.r.a., which was an ethnic-based group -- >> don't you recruit muslim people among the islamic people? they start with nation states. like with ireland, he's got a passport from northern ireland -- >> chris, how can you tell. >> you can't tell. >> exactly. you cannot profile. >> 1,000 people get on the plane. and you can only check ten. which ten do you check? that's what we're talking about. >> not the elderly grandmother. >> do you check joan rivers? >> no. >> she got bumped off a flight the other day.
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i get a little heated on this, because i think everybody likes to push aside the issue. you have limited resources. i don't think we pay the tsa people enough. we need some new york cops, retired cops, with street instinct standing around those airports who have the sense of these questions. by the way, you can't interrogate passengers. you can't ask them all these questions right now. >> my colleague doesn't want profiling, let's be candid, because you think it would lead to broad stigmatizization -- >> all of a sudden -- i wouldn't like it either. everybody from those countries knows why this is going on. and it's not done by prejudice people, it's done because common sense tells you -- by the way, if americans kept attacking arab countries, we would be checked. >> of course. profiling -- >> i can tell you. if these bombers were from america, we'd be check. this conversation is going to get more heated as time goes on. if we get hit again, this won't
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be a calm conversation. up next, is there room in the republican party for anyone other than these protesters? they seem to be running the party right now even though they say they're not republicans. they're all republicans. announcer: trying to be good to your heart? so is campbell's healthy request soup. low in fat and cholesterol, heart healthy levels of sodium, and taste you'll love. chef: we're all kind of excited about it. guy: mmm! i can see why. announcer: campbell's healthy request. m'm! m'm! good! for your heart. tell carl he's coming to new york with me. i thought you said carl was our best presentation guy. [ worker ] he is. just last week he told my team about fedex office print online for our presentations. we upload it to fedex office, then they print, bind, and ship it. the presentation looks good, right? yes, but --
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back with "the politics
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fix." mark mckinnon from "usa today" and susan page. here's your quote, tea is the new kool-aid for republicans and a lot of candidates and office holders on the right are drinking from it like a fire hose. t.e.a. party crowd is unlikely to become a third party but their leverage for energy behind candidates and policies could be very similar to what moveon.org does. will it be sarah palin? you first, mark. it is your idea. the t.e.a. baggers are an interesting group to watch. they're not far right. they're probably center right and in fact some centrists. but they're generally republican voters. is that fair to say? they vote republican? >> yeah, they're conservative voters, unquestionably. what's happened is the gop brand is so damaged that when you ask
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overall voters right now their favorable impressions of the parties, they have a more favorable impression of the t.e.a. party than they do of the republican party and you ask that among independent voters an they have a more favorable opinion of the t.e.a. party than either the democratic party or the republican party. >> that's true. does that mean they end up voting when they go to the voting booth there is no t.e.a. party candidate, i would argue that's good for republicans. they will vote for a tom coburn from pennsylvania this year, or they will find a republican that's not offensive to them and vote for them. even if it is pat toomey. they'll just vote for any republican because they are steamed up. >> they are the movement -- movements are about people that are angry at the institution and the establishment. so, yes, they're republicans. they're people who are out of power, they're unhappy and the t.e.a. party's become the vessel through which they're fueling their anger. >> they're monochromatic, right? >> i don't know that they're monochromatic.
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>> they aren't? they are in every picture i see. they're all white, every single one of them is white. >> i think that's a fair characterization. >> let me ask susan that what's about. >> i done think these are really republican voters. these are the kind of cop lilis -- populist -- >> who do they vote for? mccain or obama? that's how we keep score. >> they vote for palin over mccain. >> they're both republicans. why are you resisting this? t.e.a. baggers are republicans. >> i don't think that's true. i think these are voters who don't like either party and who went for pat buchanan and for ross perot. >> in almost all state elections for governor, congress people, there is a republican candidate, democratic candidate and this coming election in november they'll vote republican. >> the risk for republicans is not so much in the general election but will they be a real
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force for -- in primaries to get republican candidates who will not fare well. >> when we come back, we have a real full-mooner for you to watch. is he from minnesota and he thinks the real danger to america are what he calls the radicals -- wait until you hear his words. it is not the terrorists, it is the democrats. wait until you hear this guy. he's ready to fight this guy. we'll be right back with susan and mark. you're watching "hardball." bu tn the showing-kids- new-worlds business. and the startup-capital- for-barbers business. and the this-won't- hurt-a-bit business. because we don't just work here. we live here. these are our families. and our neighbors. and by changing lives we're in more than the energy business we're in the human energy business. chevron. you don't decide when vegetables reach the peak of perfection. the vegetables do. at green giant, we pick vegetables only when they're perfect. then freeze them fast so they're as nutritious as fresh.
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Hardball With Chris Matthews
MSNBC January 5, 2010 5:00pm-6:00pm EST

News/Business. Leaders and newsmakers debate political issues. New. (CC)

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